Subject: I have found a CD that I think you would enjoy
Ben Folds Live
Genres: Alternative Rock, Pop, Rock
Ben Folds Live is a stellar exception to the rule that live albums are contractually obliged stocking fillers. Folds is at his best on stage with only a grand piano for company. He is a compelling showman who's blessed wit... more »
Ben Folds Live is a stellar exception to the rule that live albums are contractually obliged stocking fillers. Folds is at his best on stage with only a grand piano for company. He is a compelling showman who's blessed with an unforced charm that complements the anger and melancholy that informs most of his songs: the self-lacerating "Army" loses nothing by having a hall of people bellowing the saxophone and trumpet parts as Folds conducts them. The material here spans Folds' work with the three-piece Ben Folds Five as well as 2001's excellent solo debut. The readings of "Fred Jones," "The Luckiest," and "Brick" display an immediacy and intimacy that transcend the recorded versions. A couple of worthwhile curiosities--a minor chord rearrangement of "Song for the Dumped" and a faithful, affecting version of Elton John's "Tiny Dancer" round out the offerings. This is an impeccable document of a superior performer at work. --Andrew Mueller
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Great, but not squeaky clean.
DK | Old Tappan, NJ USA | 01/23/2003
(5 out of 5 stars)
"This is a great album, but even though it is labelled "clean", there are still some lyrics you might not want young kids to hear, ...that are not bleeped out. I suggest you listen to it by yourself first before playing it around little ones. Also be aware that the DVD has the explicit versions."
"It's where religion and drugs meet back on the other side."
Sam Thursday | APO, AE United States | 11/25/2004
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Ben Folds Live is easily the best live album I've ever owned, and the bonus DVD in this set is truly fabulous. For some strange reason, Amazon is not selling the "explicit" version with the bonus DVD, which I highly recommend. For the information of concerned parents everywhere, I would just like to say that Ben Folds in no way encourages stupid or illicit behavior on this album; nor does he graphically discuss sex or violence. He just uses the "F" word three or four times. If anything, he'll make your kid think that piano lessons are cool.
It's true, the bonus DVD contains the lyrics to "song for the dumped" and "army" complete with offending gerunds, and it also contains a truly flabbergasting solo at the end of "philosophy" that segues into what I think it a Lizst piece. Ben also has the audience participate in "army" (which was recorded in the studio with a full horns section), and help him make the album cover by flipping him off and yelling at him (just watch it). He also does a terrific cover of "tiny dancer" by Elton John on both the audio CD and the DVD.
The actual CD is the main attraction, of course, with rarities like "silver street" and "one down" which aren't on any of the full albums, and a pretty funny little number called "rock this [...]" which is just Ben riffing on something an audience member screamed out. The covers of "philosophy," "best imitation of myself," and "not the same" are better than any of the original recordings. Go buy this for someone interesting today."